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Bees and beekeeping for improving rural livelihoods in Ghana

Making a difference worldwide

Buzz Club Ghana

Our Buzz Club Project is all about teaching beekeeping in schools to promote educational achievement. We are establishing beekeeping clubs - called Buzz Clubs - in schools. The children learn about bees, beekeeping, the role of bees in the environment and earn income too. This income will be used to help cover future costs associated with their secondary education. 

Introduction

In Ghana many talented young people are prevented from attending school due to poverty. This means that many pupils who succeed at primary school cannot fulfil their potential and are denied the chance of secondary school education. Only 20% of Ghana’s children sit WASSCE (West Africa Senior School Certificate Examination). Education is crucial to well-being and prosperity. An education helps farmers to price and sell produce. Education improves healthcare, childcare and gender equality.

The purpose of the Project is to improve educational opportunities and living standards through beekeeping, and to engender entrepreneurism in young people.

The aims of the Project are:

  • To give young people skills in beekeeping
  • To educate school children about the role of bees in the environment, and in food production
  • To enable young people to earn income, through honey selling, to help cover secondary school costs, such as uniform and transport
  • To give young people an introduction to entrepreneurship and business

The Project will partner with Buzz Club children in Stroud, UK, facilitating the transfer of knowledge and cross-cultural understanding. Additionally, the Project will improve cashew and mango yields through the increased pollination services of bees. Research has shown that the presence of bees significantly increases crop yields. The additional income from the improved harvest will increase the well-being of poor farming families and enhance the life-chances of their children.

Phase 1, 2016

In the first phase the Project worked with 20 children in two schools. These 20 children were each given 5 hives, a swarm box, a smoker, a hive tool, protective clothing and a bicycle, plus extensive in-depth training and support on beekeeping. This is the start of a four-year period, during which time they will manage their bees, and sell honey and beeswax. For an investment of £220, each child will have the chance to progress with their education, gain entrepreneurial skills and they could potentially go on to a professional career or set up their own business.

Teachers play an important role in this model. Two teacher-supporters, in each school are also equipped and trained in beekeeping. The advantage of training teachers is that they can provide on-site assistance and continued support, as well as gaining income and expertise themselves.

Phase 2, 2017 

In the second phase in 2017 we are:

  • establishing Buzz Clubs in a four further schools
  • working to multiply bee colonies through colony splitting to build up the number of bees
  • producing an age-appropriate teaching pack for schools, about bees and beekeeping

 

 

 

 

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Bees for Development Trust is the working title of The Troy Trust, Registered Charity 1078803
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